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Brazil allows banks to use tax credits BRASILIA: The government will allow Brazil's banks to convert tax credits into capital and some debt into equity during times of financial stress, in a surprising decision that came as officials laid out guidelines for the introduction of new capital rules. Under guidelines for the implementation of Basel III rules in Brazil, central bank and finance ministry officials also said on Friday that the banking system appeared to have plenty of capital for now and the next two years. The local bonds that will be eligible for conversion into stock are the so-called "letras financeiras" that comprise both debt and equity-like features. The government will allow banks to use tax credits as funds that can be counted as capital if a situation of financial stress leads to losses or bankruptcy. Currently, there are more than 110 billion reais ($55.5 billion) of tax credits on the balance sheets of domestic banks, ...

Venezuela CARACAS: Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez is fighting for his life in a Caracas military hospital 10 days after returning from cancer treatment in Cuba, his vice president said Thursday.   Vice President Nicolas Maduro did not provide more details, but the government said last week that Chavez was still suffering from a respiratory infection and that the trajectory was not favorable.   As he presented subsidized homes on state-run television, Maduro said that Chavez was "battling for his health, ...
SpaceX set for third mission to space station   WASHINGTON: As US firm SpaceX prepares for its third launch to the space station Friday, NASA said there was nothing "particularly challenging" about a mission that a few months ago was unprecedented.   Liftoff is set for 10:10 am local time (1510 GMT) in Cape Canaveral, Florida, to launch the unmanned Dragon capsule into orbit carrying some 1,200 pounds (544 kilograms) of supplies to the International Space Station.   Forecasts give an 80 percent chance of favorable weather conditions.   This ...
With Chavez out of sight, opposition eyes election CARACAS: As Hugo Chavez recovers in a military hospital, the Venezuelan opposition is huddling to pick a unity candidate in case the ailing president is unable to govern and a snap election is called.Chavez returned to Caracas eight days ago after two months of cancer treatment in Cuba, but he has remained out of sight, fueling speculation about his health and political future.Vice President Nicolas Maduro insisted Tuesday that Chavez, 58, remained firmly in charge, ...
With Chavez still sick, supporters turn to religion CARACAS: A priest sang the name of deities, drummers provided the beat and 150 people dressed in white danced in a room that became hotter with every incantation -- all for the health of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez.Another day, another prayer for Chavez, whose cancer relapse has pained his fervent followers, many of whom have attended ceremonies in Catholic churches, the Caracas mosque and now even a Yoruba ritual of African origin held in a ...
Despite Venezuela homecoming, Chavez still out of sight CARACAS: From a billboard bearing his face, to a giant inflatable doll and posters hawked on the street below, there is no shortage of images of Hugo Chavez at the Caracas military hospital where he has been since returning from Cuba.Yet there has been no sight of the 58-year-old Venezuelan president since he came home during the night and without photos or fanfare a week ago.His surprise return to Caracas raised supporters' hopes of a ...
Fidel Castro backs move to younger leadership: report HAVANA: Fidel Castro and the Cuban communist party have given the green light for reforms paving the way for a new, younger generation of leaders in the single-party state, state media said Monday. As expected, Sunday's session of Cuba's National Assembly re-elected Castro's 82-year-old brother Raul to serve a second and final five-year presidential term. But the assembly also promoted Miguel Diaz-Canel, 52, already a member of the Council of State, to a senior vice ...


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Banking Review 2014

Foreign Debt $61.805bn
Per Cap Income $1,386
GDP Growth 4.14%
Average CPI 8.6%
Trade Balance $-2.378 bln
Exports $2.016 bln
Imports $4.394 bln
WeeklyJuly 23, 2015
Reserves $18.677 bln